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Warm up to ensure you give your best
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Physical warm-up exercises

You may not believe it, but doing physical warm-up exercises can be make-or-break before any presentation – literally! Warming up your ankles, for example, helps prevent any nasty trip-ups as you make your way to the stage. Here is a series of top-to-toe exercises. Please be careful if you have a recent injury or medical condition.
Vocal warm-up exercises

Most professional presenters and speakers go through a series of vocal exercises before they face their audiences. If you’re not relaxed and in the right frame of mind when you start to speak, you could come across as either nervous or wooden.
Feet 1ft apart, shoulders down, back straight, head facing forward. Then head slowly down, wait a second, rotate to the left and then lift head up, looking over your left shoulder. Head down and rotate back to the centre, slowly bring head up and look forward. Repeat this sequence to the right. Then repeat total left and right in turn 6 times.

Roll your shoulders forward and back 8 times.

Raise your left arm straight above your head with your right hand grasping it at the elbow. With your shoulders above your hips, bend to the right and hold for 10 seconds. Change your hands over and bend to the left and hold. Repeat set 3 times.

Rotate and bend your hips from side to side for 30 seconds.

Put your feet together and with your hands on your knees, bend and rotate your knees 4 times in each direction.

Rotate each ankle 8 times clockwise and anti-clockwise.
Place your hands on your lower ribs. Breathe in fully and slowly through the nose and out through the mouth. Repeat 10 times.

One great exercise for pitch and breath control is to hum any simple tune you know with an ‘M’ sound. Don’t push the voice from the throat, breathe easily and hum gently. Without changing the pitch, increase and decrease the force – this exercise also helps improve your lung capacity.

Articulation and diction are essential to making sure your audience can understand you – say each of the following sounds as fast as you can, repeating them for as long as you can… in a single breath!

   P F TH T S K H

Read the following out loud, making sure you pronounce all the consonants clearly…

   In Tooting, two tutors astute
   Tried to toot a Duke on a flute
   But duets so gruelling
   End only in duelling
   When tutors astute toot the flute!
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